Nebraska Heart Institute Give AEDs to Lincoln Youth Football Teams

LINCOLN–(KFOR Aug. 23)–After Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest in the team’s regular season game against the Cincinnati Bengals in early January, calls grew louder for AEDs at sporting events.

Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death among youth athletes, according to the Mayo Clinic.  Those cases prompted CHI Health Nebraska Heart Institute to take action in hopes of saving lives.

“For a lethal arrhythmia, only electrical charge and a defibrillation will actually counteract that lethal arrhythmia,” according to Rick Thompson, president of NHI.

On Wednesday, officials with NHI gave AEDs to teams in the Lincoln Youth Football League to have at practices.  Each coach also learned how to use the life-saving devices.

The Lincoln Youth Football League has one at its complex next to Sherman Field, but the teams didn’t have any for their practices until now.  That will make practice much safer.

“The AEDs will make all of our operation, all of our practice sites 100% safer,” league Commissioner Mike Selvage said. “It gives us that peace of mind that we have the access to early defibrillation in the event of a cardiac event.”

The plan has been in the works for at least two years.